Doncaster’s Tara Moore has declared her first round win in the ladies’ singles at Wimbledon as “the best I’ve ever had”.
The 23-year-old blasted her way into the second stage of the Championships with a comprehensive 6-3 6-2 victory over Alison Van Uytvanck of Belgium on Court 8 in front of a patriotic crowd, including many from South Yorkshire.
“You can’t describe it,” Moore said.
“To win at Wimbledon, that’s like every little girl’s dream who plays tennis. For me, this is what I’ve been working towards and I definitely want to keep pushing forward.
“It was tough. Alison came out and played some good tennis. She has a great game for grass. She hits quite flat and hard, and she serves really well. Once my nerves had settled I felt really calm and played into it. I felt good out there.
“I do feel that things are coming together. I’ve changed a lot of things in the background recently. I’ve got a new team, a coach, a mental coach, and we all gel really well. You can’t do everything by yourself in tennis. It’s so tough as it is, so to have a good team around you is important.”
The improved mental side to Moore’s game shone through during the fourth game of the second set when she faced four break points against her serve, and managed to save them all.
“Mental toughness is something that you see in all the top players in the game,” she said. “You look at Novak (Djokovic) who I really admire and he’s like a brick wall. You can’t break his defences down and that’s so important. That’s something I’ve been trying to work towards, and I definitely think it’s improved.”
Victory means that Moore, who received a wildcard into this year’s Wimbledon, is guaranteed a pay cheque of at least £50,000.
That money which will help bankroll her existence on the expensive treadmill which is the global tennis tour.
In round two she will now face the formidable presence of the number 13 seed and former two time Grand Slam champion Svetlana Kuznetsova of Russia.
“It’s going to be a really tough match,” admitted Moore.
“I’m going to go out there and play the best tennis I possibly can. My coaches went to watch her (Kuznetsova) and they’ll give me really good feedback before then, I’m sure.”
Weather depending that match should take place on Thursday when all being well Moore’s grandparents, who were unable to make the journey from Rossington for her first round tie, will be in the stands to support her.
“That’s my only regret, that they couldn’t be here, because they mean so much to me. They really wanted to come but it’s so far. And it’s comfortable to watch it all on TV! But hopefully I can talk them into making it to my next match.”